tv International Programming CSPAN February 28, 2011 12:00am-12:30am EST
for libya. they urged u.n. member countries to freeze the assets of mr. gaddafi. they also issued a travel ban. this was on his family and people close to him. they additionally agreed to a -- to refer this deadly crackdown to a war crimes tribunal for investigation for possible crimes against humanity. the u.n. human rights council also condemned the actions against protesters. here's a portion of those remarks at the council meeting in geneva.
libya. the >> mr. president, distinguished members of the human rights council, ladies and gentlemen, i commend the initiative ofthis council to hold a special session on human rights in secre united nations noted, the scale of the attacks on civilians are egregious violations of international humanitarian and human rights law. he condemned them without qualification and stated that those responsible for brutally shedding the blood of innocents must be punished. let me remind this council that
at the 2005 summit, world leaders unanimously agreed that each individual state has the responsibility to protect its population from crimes against humanity and other international crimes. this responsibility entails the prevention of such crimes, including the incitement through appropriate and necessary means. when the state is manifestly failing to protect its population from serious international crime, the international community has the responsibility to step then by taking protective action in a collective and decisive manner. in its emergency session this week, the security council highlighted the need to hold the responsibility to protect, to provide humanitarian assisnce, to allow human rights monitoring, and to ensure accountability. my office is prepared to respond
to these needs as a matter of high insurgency. as we meet today, the protesters who assert their right to freedom of assembly have denounced the brutal ways of there's government, challenging their role at great peril to themselves and their families. they have appealed to the united nations and to the international community for protection. we owe them our solidarity and protection from violence. we must keep their aspirations for freedom, dignity, and responsible governance. far from being manipulated by external forces, their protests are a display of people's power and exercise of direct democracy that deserves and commands international respect and support. the international community has repeatedly urged muammar gaddafi 8 to desist from
violence, and despite international condemnations and appeals for restraint, the libyan leader chose to foment conflict. he called on his supporters to get out of their homes, until the streets against the protesters, and attack them as he said. all those reports are patchy and hard to varity -- to verify, but one thing is very clear. the continuing breach of international law, the crackdown in libya against peaceful demonstration is escalating alarmingly, what the report of mass killings, detentions, and torture of protesters. tanks, helicters, and military aircraft have possibly been used indiscriminately to attack the protestors. according to some sources, thousands may have been killed or injured. the me reiterate that the state
has an obligation to protect the rights of life, liberty, and security of the people under their jurisdiction. the protection of civilian should be the paramount consideration in maintaining orr d the rule of law. the libyan leader must top of violence now. libya is a member of the human rights council. and it pledged to respect human rights. libya is also a state party to international human rights treaties, including the international covenant on civil and political rights it has the obligation to protect and implement rights and freedoms as enshrined in international human rights treaties. but we also recall that under international l, it in the official at any level ordering or carrying out atrocities and the tax can be held criminally accountable, and that
widespread and systematic attacks against civilian populations may amount to crimes against humanity. witnesses in and out of libya consistently described horrifying scenes. libyan forces are firing at protesters, sealing off nehborhoods, and shooting from rooftops. they also blocked ambulances said that the injured and dead are left on the streets. reports from hospitals indicate that most of the victims have been sho in the head, chest, or net. suggesting arbitrary and summary execution. doctors relate that they are struggling to cope and are running out of blood supplies and medicine to treat the wounded. images of unverifiable origin appear to portray the digging of mass graves inripoli.
according to several accounts, killings have also been carried out by far and fighters who were and reportedly brought into the country and equipped with small arms and light weapons by the government to suppress the protests. in this connection, my office has received reports that some libyans are turning on refugees and migrants from other african countries, suspecting them of being mercenaries fighting for the libyan government. at the same time, there are reports that the authorities have suggested that certain foreign nationals have been primarily responsible for initiating the unrest, thereby encouraging attacks on foreigners. it is important that the safety of all foreign nationals be ensured at the freedom of movement of those wishing to leave the country people in respected and protected.
libyan authorities must allow the safe passage of humanitarian and medical supplies and humanitarian workers into the country. they must also ensure that the legitimate demands of the protesters are addressed, and the fundamental human rights of the population are fully respected and promoted. excellencies, libya's neighbors have a particular responsibility to exert utmost vigilance to protect the vulnerable. i am concerned for the safety and well-being of refugees crossing into neighboring countries, particularly katishia, egypt, italy, and malta. i urge italy's net -- libya's neighbors to open their borders and ensure that refugees fleeing the violence in libya are welcomed and treated humanely. libya's political partners and allies are uniquely positioned
to exercise their individual and collective influence for the protection of human rights in libya. in this context, i welcome the initial steps taken by some governments and regional organizations, but more needs to be done. i am encouraging a international actors to take all necessary measures to stop the bloodshed. i've also called for an independent and impartial investigation to investigate the pilot otection -- repression of protest in the country. is but let us be clear. today's shocking and brutal demonstration of the outcome of a careless disregard for the rights and freedoms of libyans that has marked the decades-long grip on power by the current ruler. there can be no doubt about the
need for actions by this council now. the human rights council and its mechanism should step and vigorously to help and violence in libya and all those perpetrating the atrocities accountable. the council should use all means available to compel the libyan government to respect the human rights and indeed the will of its people. the victims of human-rights violations and violations of international humanitarian law deserve no less. thank you. >> thank you. i like to thank the high commissioner for her statement and for her presence with us. i now have the pleasure to give the floor to mr. gomez, chair of the council. >> on behalf of all special
procedures, mandate holders, you have the floor. >> mr. president, madam high commissioner for human rights, distinguished delegates, ladies and gentlemen. the board of special procedures has requested me to deliver the following statement on behalf of the special procedures mandate holders of the human rights council. mr. president, we but 41 independent mandate holders of special procedures of the council mechanisms to protect human rights contemn in the strongest possible terms the
violent suppressn of the peacefulrotests by the people of libya who are calling for dignity, liberty, and social justice. since the start of the protests, we've received numerous reports of excessive and vastly disproportionate use of force against protesters, including the use of live ammunition and military planes. we have heard allegations of rture, mistreatment, and the attention of individuals. including human rights defenders, lawyers, and journalists. as a result, several hundred people have died. many others have been arrested. thousands are injured. the suffering continues to rise. there have been disturbing accounts of women and children among the victims.
there have been reports that authorities had enlisted mercenaries from other countries to support the crackdown on demonstrators in libyan cities. the government's is encouraging -- the government is hurting the very people it has been sworn to protect. these actions are illegitimate and the unlawful under international law. as the excessive use of force is never an option, and cannot be used in response to peaceful demonstrations, the report indicates that the authority mark in libya had committed fraud in serious violations of human rights, including the prevention of light, torture, and thereby violating its
obligations under the international human rights treaty which libya is a party to. furthermore, if reports are confirmed, the use of foreign on the individuals who may have been involved in the killings is unacceptable. we reiterate our called to immediately cease the excessive use of force, including lesser force against protesters. some of those injured are in critical condition and we urge the authority and to ensure access to immediate medical care to avoid further deaths. we also urge the authority to relieve all the a arbitrarily detained and to protect a peaceful protesters from torture and ill treatment. we call upon the authorities to ensure that people are able to express their legitimate grievances through public and
peaceful demonstrations without fear of being killed, injured, are arrested, are subject to other human rights violations. the government must respect its international human rights obligations. mr. president, if proof of the alleged attacks orchestrated by the authorities is part of a widespread or systematic attack against the people of libya, this could amount to crimes against humanity. those responsible must be held accountable. we also noted with concern the use a provocative language in the recent statement by the libyan president. inciting violence will only lead to an escalation of the situation and to further violations. it is important that the authorities realize that they may be tried through
international jurisdiction. we echo the cl for an international inquiry into the violence. the international community should act without delay to make its responsibility to protect civilians from serious human- rights violations in reality for the people in libya. we the mandate holders are willing to contribute to such an inquiry. mr. president, it apprs that the government is also attempting to restrict the discrimination of -- the dissemination of information by cutting off telephone communications, internet, access and restrictive coverage. we call upon the party sama to ensure that journalists can predict the at authorities -- the authorities that all means
of communication remain open and accessible to the public. the special procedures want to emphasize the wider and in demint failures to protect human rights throughout the country. for years, those defending human rights, including journalists, doctor and lawyers, had not held -- had the power that they needed without fear of reprisals. regrettably human rights defenders and others had been tortured, killed treated, are arrested, and detained without charge. whether in the past or present, those responsible for such heinous crimes might be held to account. these will need to be swiftly address, and in particularf
the widespread of economic and social rights that have been witnessed over the years. libyans are entitled to take part and policy and decision making, to claim without discrimination the right to work, and to an adequate standard of living. if these claims remain in nord, the situation will not be remedied. in addition, comprehensive and systematic of government reforms are needed to pretend -- to prevent further human rights violations. reforms must be founded on respect for the rule of law and the principles of nondiscrimination and equality enshrined in the universal declaration of human rights and other human rights instruments. mr. president, as we have stated previous occasions with regard to other sittions, as mandate holders of the human
rights council, we stand ready to provide the necessary expertise to the council. our priority is that justice is insured and that all human rights in libya are protected. if not have the benefit of seeing firsthand the situation in the country, and trefore, tocall upon the authority oies extend an invitation to mandate holders who wish to conduct a tour of the country, and special procedures welcomes the opportunity of the special session to aress important, immediate, and other issues in relation to the human-rights situation in the country. we trust this discussion inhe resolutions to be adopt will lead to immediate action to bring about an end to the reports of serious human-rights
violations and ensure the ll protection of all rights of women, men, and children in libya. thank you for your attention. >> thank you. all like to thank mr. gomez del prado for his statement. the practice is to give the floor to the country concerned, but since the delegation of libya is not in the room, i shall now like to give the floor to hungary on behalf of the european union. >> thank you, mr. president. how will be honored to speak on behalf of the european union. the countries of the civilization and potential candidates albania, bosnia,
herzegovina, as well as armenia and others. the whole world has been falling with shock and growing dismay the events unfolding in libya. reports of deaths of a very high number of demonstrators and other civilians, to use of live ammunition and heavy weaponry against peaceful demonstrators exercising their right of the freedom of assembly. the violent suppression of civilians is ongoing, including reports of arbitrary arrest of lawyers, human rights defenders, a journalist, and peaceful demonstrators. the blocking of the internet and telecommunication networks undermines the freedom of expression and freedom of the press. access to human-rights monitors and other agenciesnd humanitarian and medical supplies is not assured.
governments and civil society has not beenigned the -- silent. the urgency and seriousness of the such a question has been underlined by the eu, united nations security council, they african union, the arab league, and a wide range of international actors as well as the high commissioner for human rights. the key u.s. pleased to see that many of these organizations -- the eu is pleased to see the many of the organizations are condemning these actions. the high commissioner may be clear that the state has an obligation to protect the rights to live, the gritty, and security of its citizens. the eu endorses that each state has the responsibility to protect its population from genocide, war crimes, ethnic
cleansing, and crimes against amenity. the group of special procedure mandate holders issued a joint statement on the 22nd of february calling for -- saying that grows human rights violations could amount to crimes against a manatee. a call for an international inquiry will it continue to ensure that the interest of justice are served. in addition, theecretary general of the oic express concern over the latest developments, while the leader of the league of arab nations condemned in the strongest terms. the president of the european council was clear that these are unacceptable and must not
remain. on behalf of the european union, he condemned the repression against peaceful demonsators and deplore the violence. we also emphasized that the legitimate aspirations and demand of people for reform must be addressed to open and meaningful libyan-led dialogue. we also called for an immediate and to the use of force against protesters. therefore, we urge limit to fulfill immediately its obligations under and allow -- under international law. we hav concern against people held in libya against their own will. we ask libya to fully cooperate in protecting the rights of citizens of other countries.
the also urge the libyan to assure the safety of all foreign nationals and those wishing to leave the country. mr. president of the human rights council cannot remain silent in the face of shocking events such as those taking place now in libya. we hav the responsibility to act to stop human rights violations and take steps to remedy this. membership in the council brings an obligation. members elected to the council shall uphold t highest standards in the promotion and protection of human rights. in this context, the european union would like to say, the general assembly, by a two- thirds majority of the members
present, may suspend membership from the council those countries that commit gross violations of human rights. we have at now, because cases are growing day by day. the european yen will supports the high commissioner to act on behalf on behalf of human rights violations. we welcome the call that they should protect the population as well as holding those s.sponsible for these attacks we also believe that independent, impartial, and credible investigations should be necessary to shed light on violations of international law. in this ctext, we stress that those responsible for the oppression and violence against
civilians will be held accountable. it is our obligation that they should know that the international community is ready to act decisively for them. mr. president, in view of the above, member states of the european union together with otr responsible members have called for the special session of the human rights situation in libya, with 56 countries with all regions of the world. they've also played an invaluable role in encouraging the council to take immediate action. we welcome the report of other allegations. this sends a strong message about the need to take prompt and meaningful action for these urgent civil-rights situation. it is imperative to address situations like the one in libya.
mr. president, the council must act and must act urgently. we've decided to support this. i thank you, mr. president. >> thank you. i give the store to or wrapped on behalf of the arab league. -- i give the floor to iraq on behalf of the arab league. >> [speaking arabic] >> i am making this statement on behalf of the air leaked and endorse the statement made by the league of arab states. our group had been keeping a careful eye on their recent syrian -- serious developments
in libya, particularly tripoli. we have seen reports of heavy fighting is in the city's and the humanitarian situation affecting the libyan people, as well as the measures of repression on demonstrators. we denounce the crimes committed against demonstrators and protesters in operating peacefully taking place in a large number of libyan cities, including the capital of tripoli. we denounce acts of violence directed against civilians. unacceptable acts of violence that should never be addressed, particularly the use of foreign mercenaries, live munitions, and artillery also been directed against demonstrators. all this constitutes serious violations of human rights and